Japanese curry in the Instant Pot is a fast-but-delicious dinner option for busy evenings when you don’t really feel like cooking. With juicy chicken thighs and lots of veggies, you can serve it on its own or with a side of rice for a total meal.
What Makes This Instant Pot Japanese Curry So Good
- There’s not a lot of hands-on, active cooking with pressure cooker Japanese curry, which makes it a perfect dinner idea when you don’t feel like cooking or just don’t have a ton of time on your hands.
- The overall flavor of this recipe is a little spicy but also a little sweet. Serve it with a side of rice (like our Instant Pot Sushi Rice) to balance out the flavors even more.
- If you have leftovers, refrigerate them in an airtight container. They’ll be good for 2 to 3 days. You could freeze them in an airtight container, too!
Key Ingredients for Japanese Curry in the Instant Pot
Japanese Curry Roux – Definitely don’t skip this ingredient! The roux thickens up the liquid so it’s not as soup-like. You can use store-bought curry roux (or curry sauce mix) in this recipe if you want, but I actually recommend making your own! My favorite homemade Japanese curry roux is this easy 5-ingredient recipe from Just One Cookbook.
Chicken Thighs – We’re making a Japanese chicken curry here, so we’re using chicken thighs! Chicken thighs are a little fattier than chicken breasts, which means they’re also juicier and more flavorful. They’re typically less expensive, too. If you’d rather use another protein (beef, pork, etc.) or even just chicken breasts instead of thighs, you totally can, but you may need to adjust your cook time.
- The curry will thicken as it stands, so don’t worry if it seems a little thin or liquidy at first.
- If you’re used to making Indian curry, pay attention to the instruction card below. With Indian curry, the spices are added at the beginning. For Japanese curry, though, you’ll add the curry roux at the end!
- Adding a little milk gives your mixture an extra creaminess, but it’s totally optional. If you’re dairy free or just don’t want to use it, don’t! You can skip it altogether or try a little coconut milk or coconut cream.
What Do We Mean By Healthy?
Our recipes focus on real ingredients and homemade elements. We try to avoid processed flour and sugar, like white flour or white sugar. Our recipes often swap less healthy options (like a commercial, deep-fried tostada) for an easy homemade version.
Our recipes are not necessarily low fat or low calorie, and we aren’t afraid of fat or carbs! Some of our recipes will be “skinny,” low carb, keto, paleo, dairy free, grain free, gluten free, Whole30, or vegan, and they will be labeled when they qualify for any of these diets. All our recipes are easy and family friendly!
Other Instant Pot Recipes You’ll Love
- Instant Pot Orange Chicken
- Instant Pot Sausage and Peppers
- The Best EVER Instant Pot Black Eyed Peas
- Instant Pot Chickpeas (No Soak!)
- Instant Pot Eggs (Easy-to-Peel, Hard and Soft Boiled)
- Instant Pot Quinoa
Japanese Curry in the Instant Pot
- Instant Pot
- 2 tablespoons neutral oil avocado oil, extra virgin olive oil, etc.
- 1 ½ pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs cut into bite-sized chunks
- 1 1-inch piece ginger grated
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 2 carrots sliced
- 1 onion sliced
- 2 Yukon gold potatoes cubed
- 2 cups water
- 2 cups chicken stock
- 2 bay leaves
- ⅓ cup Japanese curry roux see Notes
- 3 tablespoons milk optional, see Notes
- salt and pepper to taste
- vinegar optional, to taste
- tamari or soy sauce optional, to taste
- Set Instant Pot to Sauté. Once hot, add oil then chicken thighs. Brown chicken thighs on each side, then remove from Instant Pot.
- Add ginger and garlic to Instant Pot. Sauté until fragrant, then add tomato paste and mix until combined.
- Add chicken thighs, carrots, onions, potatoes, water, chicken stock, and bay leaves to Instant Pot. Cover with lid and cook 10 minutes on Manual High Pressure.
- When timer is up, Quick Release pressure. Remove bay leaves. Stir in curry roux and milk (optional) until liquid has thickened. Season with salt and pepper to taste. If desired, stir in vinegar and tamari or soy sauce to taste.
- Divide into portions and serve hot.
- The milk adds an extra creaminess to the mixture, but it’s totally optional, so feel free to skip it if you want or need to.
- Highly recommend using the Japanese Curry Roux recipe from Just One Cookbook for this recipe! It’s super easy to make, with only 5 ingredients.
- Make it Dairy Free: Skip the milk completely, or use a little coconut milk or coconut cream.